Location: Lowndes County, Mississippi
Surnames/tags: Wright Moody
- My Darling Child,
- We arrived here last night about eleven oclock met with no detention on the road except at Corinth we spent several hours. I flattered myself all the way with the fond hope that I should find my dear Laura improving but vain hope. On our arrival at Artesia we met Bill Lanier he told us she died Tuesday and was buried the day before our arrival. I was so sadly disappointed for I could not believe she would die and was thinking how glad she would be to see us. John has decided to go to Columbus and I shall take Sippie and the dear little baby home with me. We shall return as soon as possible but can't say when, in a week, I suppose, we shall leave. Dear Laura was improving and the Dr thought out of danger Sunday Monday she was taken with conjestion of the brain and died Tuesday. Dear little Willie doesn't know me at all he talks as plain as Willie Leigh, when I first entered the room where he was he looked at me and said go away Mrs Moody I reckon he heard some one say I was here. My eyes hurt me so much I have determined to write but one letter for you all. As soon as you read it send it to Mollie and ask her to send it to Laura. I will if possible get John to go home with me he is deeply distresses and I feel so sorry for him. It is very sickly out here at this time more so than it has been for some years. Aunt Mary I hear is not very well. Maud left here just before we arrived. Let me hear from dear little Willie, I hope she is well or much better. Love to Gib and the children.
- Yours affectionately M M
- My darling Laura, do not be uneasy about me I am as well as usual and will get home as soon as I can. I will go to see you when I get home if nothing happens to prevent. I know you were disappointed in my not going when you expected me. Much love to Nat. Take care of yourself. I cant write more my eyes are paining me so. I must stop. Yours affect--- M M
- Dear Mollie, We thought it best not to send for you, I should fear for you to be out here. I do hope John will go and stay a short time at least, I cannot bear to leave him here so lonely and so sorrowful no one to care for him or to take care of him if he gets sick, but as he is going to Columbus I suppose Aunt Mary will be near him. Love to Joe and Mrs N Take care of yourself and do the best you can until I get home. I do miss my Dear Laura so much I want to leave as soon as I can. Your Father is well. Kiss Anna for me.
- Yours affect---
- M M
- Yours affect---
- You will find several envelopes in the book not all in the same place.
- [Someone else has written "Letter from Martha W. Moody to her daughter"]
- VLR (Virginia Leigh Refo)
- Letter written from Martha William Moody to her daughter(s) on her arrival in Lowndes County, MS to find that her daughter-in-law, Laura (Tabb) Moody, wife of her younger son, John Mason Moody, Jr. is dead. This occurred after the birth of their second son, John Mason Moody, III, who also died. Artesia is the town closest to the Moody property on "the prarie" Cobb's Switch (now called Bent Oak). Cobb's Switch was actually about halfway between Artesia and Columbus, MS. And the railroad stopped there which is probably why JMM bought property there. "Sippie" (Virginia Gordon Tabb) is Laura's younger sister, about 17 at the time. She went on to marry the Moody's older son, Dr. William Scott Moody in 1869. "Willie" is William Robert Moody, older son of John and Laura, whom Martha took back home and raised in Virginia and North Carolina. He was the father of Bishop William Robert Moody, Episcopal Bishop of Lexington, Ky. "Willie Leigh" is Martha William Leigh, the third child and younger daughter of Martha's daughter, Martha “Alice” Leigh and Dr. H.G. Leigh (Gib). The first part of the letter is addressed to “Alice”.
- The other daughters are Laura (Moody) Gregory, wife of Nathaniel Gregory (Nat), and Mary Elizabeth Lockhart, (Mollie), wife of Joseph G. Lockhart (Joe), and mother of Anna. "Aunt Mary" is Martha William Moody's aunt Mary Jane (Crump) Leigh, her mother's youngest sister, widow of the Rev. H.G. Leigh, and mother of Dr. Leigh (Gib). "Maud" is Mary Alice Leigh, youngest daughter of Rev. H.G. Leigh and Mary Jane (Crump) Leigh and sister of Dr. H.G. Leigh. She later married Col. James Craddock. Mrs. N is most probably Nannie Newsom (see letter # 47 and others).
- Virginia and Laura Tabb were the daughters of Thomas Bolling Tabb and Laura Taylor. This branch of the Tabb family originally came from Amelia County, Va. and married into the Bolling family of Dinwiddie/Petersburg.
- This is a particularly tough time for the Moodys as they are in the middle of bankruptcy proceedings.
- Many thanks to cousin Virginia Leigh Refo whose research and transcriptions added to this profile. The originals were donated to the Library of Virginia in 2004 by Liz Edens Vermillion with the help of Virginia Refo Moody Family Papers, 1750-1881. Accession 40535, Personal Papers Collection, The Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia.